Ann Arbor City Council approves resolution of support for passenger rail in Michigan
The Ann Arbor City Council went on record Monday night to unanimously support the state of Michigan's efforts to develop and fund a comprehensive system of high-speed rail and intercity passenger rail services.
Ryan J. Stanton | AnnArbor.com
Mayor John Hieftje, who sponsored the resolution, said the Michigan Municipal League is asking Ann Arbor and other communities to demonstrate support for the Michigan Department of Transportation's new application for funding from a $2.5 billion second round of federal high-speed rail grants.
"A tremendous amount of money has been put into high-speed rail," Hieftje said. "I think up to $4 billion has already been handed out. This next round is $2.5 billion. And as we've said before, the improvements that would take place for the high-speed corridor are exactly the same improvements that we need for commuter rail to work."
The MML will compile a set of local government resolutions of support from Ann Arbor and other communities throughout the state. It will be provided to MDOT for the grant application being submitted to the Federal Railroad Administration.
The City Council's resolution states that developing a pipeline of national high-speed and intercity passenger rail projects will revitalize the domestic manufacturing industry and create additional American jobs. It also notes that ridership on Amtrak grew every year from 2000 through 2008, and 2010 is looking to be its best ridership year ever - demonstrating the increased demand for intercity passenger rail services.
The council's resolution also reaffirms the city's commitment to Ann Arbor's planned Fuller Road transit station, as well as the Ann Arbor-to-Detroit and Ann Arbor-to-Howell rail projects.
Click here to read the full resolution.
Ryan J. Stanton covers government and politics for AnnArbor.com. Reach him at email@example.com or 734-623-2529.